My great grandfather Issac came to the USA at the end of the Civil War.  He was seventeen. The family legend is that he had been an apprentice baker in Germany. Once he settled in Washington DC, he opened a small bakery to serve the city’s growing German-Jewish community.

That business supported my family for 150 years. Working there taught me about people, cultures and relationships. The most important of those lessons was that strangers from disparate backgrounds can work together in harmony to accomplish amazing things.

Our workforce was the embodiment of America.  Hardworking people - each with their own unique, amazing story - coming together to reach a common goal.  That workforce morphed from primarily European refugees (‘40s/‘50s) to African Americans migrating North (‘60s/‘70s/‘80s) to Eastern European refugees (‘90s) to Hispanics (today).   

In the 1980’s we started making tortillas.  It was at the exact moment Russia started allowing its Jewish citizens to leave for the first time.  The result was that we had an almost entirely Russian speaking team making high quality tortillas in a German heritage kosher bakery. Only in America!

My career in baking has now come to a close.  it is time for my second act.  In this next phase, I intend to continue my lifelong adventure meeting people from as many different backgrounds as possible.  We communicate based on a common passion - the love of great artisan food.  

Storied Foods was born.

Join us as a fellow explorer as we search for great artisan foods and the fascinating people who create them.  Share your personal stories of great food and people.  We want to hear every one. 

Ray Ottenberg